Posts Tagged ‘gluten free menu swap’

This week’s theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap is ‘Grilling’ and it’s hosted by Angela’s Kitchen. We’re planning to escape up north for some camping in the mountains (and hopefully get away from this darn Wallow Fire smoke), so we’ll be grilling!  Or, rather, campfire cooking (did you see Pete’s recent post about their camping trip and the food they ate?). Luckily we are headed to one of the three parks in the state where you can still use a campfire (due to fire restrictions). Otherwise, cooking on a camp stove is too much like cooking at home and you have to admit that campfires are one of the best things about camping, right?

Here’s the plan:

Pasta with Fava Beans, Sage and Garlic – recipe from Vegetarian Feasts by Martha Rose Shulman.

Ma Po Tofu with broccoli and rice – we’ll be omitting the sirloin from this recipe.

Chickpea Curry Simmer Sauce with rice – this will probably be our just-got-home-Sunday-night-and-I-don’t-wanna-cook meal.

Campfire Roasted Sausages with Potato Packets – veggie sausages for the hubby, meaty ones for me. As well, foil packets with potatoes, carrots, onions and bell peppers roasted over the fire (we do these on the grill at home too).

Pie Iron Pizzas with Salad and Pie Iron Fruit Pies – we haven’t used our pie irons in ages! I will be using either Udi’s or Rudi’s bread – can’t remember what is in the freezer, maybe both (Costco now carries frozen Rudi’s!). For the pizza pies we’ll stuff them with sauce, cheese, bell pepper, onion, sausage, etc. For the fruit pies we’ll just use canned pie filling. There’s also the possibility of S’more/Rocky Road pies, with chocolate, marshmallows and nuts inside – and maybe some banana. Yum! I can’t wait!

Pie Iron info for those of you who haven’t experienced them. We have the traditional square ones.

What is your favorite campfire food?

Be sure to head back over to Angela’s Kitchen later this week to see all the links to the other meal plans. And for even more inspiration, check out OrgJunkie for hundreds of meal plans, literally (not GF or veggie but always some that are adaptable!).


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I am getting back on the wagon this week – the meal planning wagon, that is. Not that I ever really fell off. I mean, I always have a plan when going shopping. But lately it hasn’t been all that inspiring for multiple reasons. This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is being hosted by Wendy at Celiacs in the House and the theme is “what’s in season?” Here at our house we only have kale, lettuce and cilantro ready for picking, all cool season plants. The warm season plants are now finally all planted and already growing! I happily sat outside a bit over the weekend in the morning, sipping my tea and  watched our bees buzzing around, pollinating the tomato plants and such. And the chickens pecking around at their scratch. So bucolic. I only need my dream goats! What have you planted this year to enjoy later in the season?

I knew we should eat up some of the kale since it is getting pretty warm and it won’t be growing for much longer. And I didn’t make it to the farmer’s market this weekend so I don’t have anything else very seasonal this week. Well, some snap peas for my lunches. And lettuce and cabbage for lunch salads. That said, here’s our plan.

Pasta with White Beans and Kale – a new-to-us recipe, which I will double to make sure we had enough for two entrees and leftovers.

Bean Tacos with Spanish rice

Moroccan Chickpea Salad

Veggie Burgers with Red Rice, Cucumber and Avocado Salad

Chicken Tikka Masala with Rice and Steamed Broccoli – instead of chicken, we will use two cans of drained and rinsed chickpeas.

San Marzano Deep Dish Pizza with Mediterranean Salad – have you seen Pete’s new deep dish pizza recipe? It looks delish! I can’t wait to try it!

And if the weather cooperates with us better next weekend to where we can actually keep the grill lit – Yummy Grilled Tofu and Vegetables.

What’s your plan this week?

Be sure to head over to Celiacs in the House later this week to check out all of the other Gluten Free Menus for some more inspiration!

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Trying to keep it simple this week, nothing new on the menu plan, just some old favorites.

This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap theme is ‘borrowing inspiration’ and well, mine are all borrowed! I almost always borrow, but then modify to fit our needs. Be sure to head on over to Gluten Free Goodness and check out the other meal plans that get posted throughout the week too…

Black Bean Chili from Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure by Lorna Sass

Spicy Tofu with Vegetables and Rice from The Complete Book of Thai Cooking

Thai Tomato Soup with grilled cheese

Miso Vegetable Noodle Bowls

For the rest of the week, we’ll have leftovers one or two nights and then probably one night of eating pantry staples like spaghetti and salad, chickpea curry, etc. This allows us flexibility but also makes me use up what I buy and not waste food.

What do you have planned for the week?

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Hello, hello!

It’s been a while since I have posted but that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been meal planning – or eating! But my meal plans have been pretty lame and more off the cuff than usual. We returned from vacation last night to an empty frig and thus today I was inspired to get together a better meal plan.

This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by Cheryl at Gluten Free Goodness and her chosen theme is sugar-free delights in honor of the upcoming  sugar-laden holiday(s)! Be sure to stop over at Cheryl’s later this week when everyone has posted their meal plans for a lot of inspiration.

As I was writing up my plan this afternoon, I thought that perhaps some of you would like to know more about how I menu plan for the week.

Generally my husband and I eat the same mix of breakfasts and lunches throughout the week, so I don’t really ‘plan’ those, per se. But as I start writing up my grocery list, I check the frig and freezer for the ingredients and foods we eat. Here is what is typical for us both on the average work-day.

Renee’s Breakfast:

Fage Greek Yogurt with berries, honey and Udi’s Gluten Free Vanilla Granola – Greek yogurt is high in protein and we both need that here at our house, and since I can’t do scrambled eggs…

Chai as my mid-morning snack on work-days, made with non-fat milk and Oregon Chai Slightly Sweet Chai Tea Latte concentrate

Renee’s Lunch:

Cheese and a couple of gluten free crackers (Crunchmaster, Nut Thins, etc)

Instant Miso Soup on the days when I need a little something else or just need warming up at the too-cold office

Carrots, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes

Fruit of some sort (whatever is on sale)

Apple with peanut butter as a late afternoon snack

Hubby’s Breakfast:

(He is not gluten free!) English muffin with egg and cheese, or vegetarian sausage patty (none of it is gluten free) OR a smoothie with yogurt, milk, fruit and protein powder

Hubby’s Lunch:

(He is not gluten free!) Peanut butter and jelly sandwich, Cheez-It’s, carrots, apple and a granola bar for a morning or afternoon snack

We are a reduce, reuse, recycle family, so we save a lot of scrap paper. In particular, I save those extra envelopes that come in bills or what have you and put them in the kitchen junk drawer. I use these envelopes mainly for my grocery lists. When we used to eat a lot more items that were processed, I would also place the coupons for the week inside the envelope so I had them at my fingertips. But as we have evolved away from fewer and fewer processed foods, we have found that there are not too many coupons for fruits and vegetables and other whole foods! This use of the envelopes is one of the habits I have learned from my own mom over the years, although my own system has evolved too.

One key to keeping a well-stocked frig and pantry is to keep a running grocery list. So I keep one of these envelopes clipped to the frig and when I run out of something, I just write it down. That way I don’t go to the cabinet expecting something to be there in the middle of cooking and find I have run out. This is the start then of next week’s list.

So, I do a quick scan of the cabinets and frig for the breakfast and lunch items above. Then I take a general look in the frig and pantry to see what in there needs to be eaten up. Half a head of broccoli or some green onions or some such ingredient. I write these items on the bottom right of my envelope to keep in mind. I hate to waste food, and even with our own laying hens, I don’t like to “waste” certain scraps on them!

Then I grab my latest issues of Cooking Light and Sunset magazines, and some favored cookbooks, and come up with a couple of ideas. As I come up with ideas, I use the back of the envelope to write the ideas down ( see below). I typically don’t attach days with meals, although sometimes I will depending on what the week holds for us. Or I may just write the days down and then meals next to them while not necessarily planning for them to match up, as I’m just looking at quantity of meals. I do plan for leftovers since there are only two of us in the household. And I write down the cookbook and page number if it is in a magazine or cookbook. If it is in my recipe binder or box, then I will flag it with a post-it or pull the card out and hang it on the frig.

(Click to make it larger.) Meals listed on the back of the envelope. Yes, a horrible job of whiting out our address...sorry about that!

As I add the meals to the back of the envelope, I am adding grocery items to the other side of the envelope. I typically hit up three grocery stores in my weekly trip – Costco, Trader Joe’s and Smith’s (traditional grocery store). So I do separate out my list slightly. As you can see below, I have the main list for Trader Joe’s and Smith’s on the left side while the Costco stuff is at the top right. Then about mid-way down on the right is the Whole Foods list – I do not go there very often, maybe twice a month. This week it says shaving soap and R pizza crust (meaning a GF crust for me). Typically I would place the list of items languishing in my frig at the bottom right also but since we have been on vacation there wasn’t much of anything in my frig to make note of today.

Typical Grocery List

You can also see on the right side, about the middle, my ‘check’ list. These are the items I need to check my pantry or frig for, but don’t want to check for while I am coming up with the plan. Once I am done planning, I get up and rummage through the freezer and cabinets once more to see if I have these items and can cross them off or if I need to add them to the main shopping list.

Then I am set to go! I typically try to do my shopping once a week, on Tuesdays. I do NOT like going to the grocery store on the weekends nor do I like going to the store multiple times during the week. I take this list with me and I mark off the items as I put them in my cart. If I don’t mark them off, I always forget something! Some people (my mom!) are even so organized that they know where things are in the grocery store and so write their list out so that the items are in (approximate) order in which she travels through the store. I’ve tried, but just can’t do that.

Then the list comes back home and gets hung up on the side of the frig with the meals showing, so that I can see what the options are for the week.

One more tip – if you use reusable grocery bags, be sure to put them right back in your car after you empty your groceries. That way they are there when you need them. It may take a while to program your head to remember to bring them into the store, but in time you will remember. I hate plastic grocery sacks!

So that’s how I do it. What are your tips for meal planning and grocery shopping?

After typing all that I was ready to hit publish. Ha! But I still need to add my meal plan! And a couple of other meal planning thoughts for you…I try to keep our tofu consumption to once a week, although there is none below in this week’s plan.

As well, I typically only plan to make 4-5 meals a week, counting on leftovers as well as potential changes in our plans.  And I still try to make sure there is at least one meal that is a  ‘pantry/freezer’ meal, meaning that if we don’t get around to making it this week, a bunch of produce isn’t going to go bad. This allows for flexibility if something comes up or we end up with more leftovers than we expected, etc. This week we have more meals planned than is typical as I will be having a medical procedure later this week that will keep us at home. So here’s the plan:

Bean Tacos and Spanish Rice

New Mexico Pinto Bean Soup with Salad and/or leftover Rice – this soup recipe is great, it’s from Lorna Sass’s Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure. I will use some of my Anasazi beans instead of pinto for this as they cook very similarly.

Quinoa Salad with Artichokes and Parsley – a new-to-us recipe from this month’s Cooking Light magazine. I will add a can of chickpeas or eat with veggie burgers for protein.

Spicy Ginger Noodles

Pizza and Salad – non-GF, vegetarian for my husband, gluten free and meaty for me

Yellow Chickpea Curry with Rice

Spaghetti and Salad

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This week’s theme for the Gluten Free Menu Swap is “quick and easy” over at Gluten Free Goodness. We’ve been doing quite a bit of quick and easy lately too.

This week’s plan:

Anasazi Beans with Poblanos, fresh-baked crusty boule and salad

Tex-Mex Lasagna and salad – this is a go-to recipe for us, we vary it a bit and make more than the recipe calls for so that we can eat on it for a couple of days. Plus I have a lot of discounted Tinkyada lasagna noodles that need to be eaten up.

Ma Po Tofu with rice and steamed broccoli – we will omit the meat in the Ma Po.

Chickpea Italiano Stew over rice with salad – this recipe is from Lorna Sass’s Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure cookbook

Chickpea Curry or the last two Green Chile and Cheese Tamales

I would also like to make some Irish Soda Bread this week, either from my go-to recipe from a Bette Hagman cookbook that I have been making for years, or one of these new ones from Amy or Karina.

Be sure to head over to Gluten Free Goodness later this week to see everyone’s inspirational posts. You can also check out OrgJunkie for hundreds more meal plans, literally, although you will need to adapt them to fit your families needs and taste buds.

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This week’s post is going to be short and sweet. I am still paying close attention to the little leftover things in the frig and pantry. Like this week, a couple of sweet potatoes and part of a bag of regular yellow potatoes. They’re outta here!

This week’s  Gluten Free Menu Swap is hosted by Michelle at Gluten Free Smiles. The theme is garlic. I don’t have anything exceptionally garlicky this week but it is in almost every dish I make. I also grow my own garlic which is super easy, it’s all about timing and watering. I have three different varieties growing this year. (Yes, you grow garlic over the winter and harvest in June/July.)

Be sure to head over to Gluten Free Smiles later this week to catch all of the menus once they’re posted. And you can try OrgJunkie too, if you’re looking for more inspiration.

Without further ado:

Spaghetti and Salad – the basic I’m getting home late meal

Cauliflower Potato Curry with basmati rice – in the pressure cooker from a Lorna Sass cookbook

Corn and Sweet Potato Chowder from Vegetarian Planet

Quinoa Taco Salad

Breakfast Risotto – for breakfast though, not dinner, great for when you have house guests

How do you make sure you don’t have anything growing legs in the pantry?

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This week’s Gluten Free Menu Swap is being hosted by Gluten Free Goodness with a theme of “Food as Love”. Quite fitting, don’t you think? You did remember Valentine’s Day, right?

Well, around here this theme fits. We don’t give gifts or make a big deal out of certain dates or holidays. We just appreciate each other every day and show it in those little ways that couples do. That said, in honor of the holiday, we will be having my husband’s favorite meal – PIZZA! – along with a chocolate dessert for us both – we both love chocolate. In fact this evening I jokingly asked him what he got me for Valentine’s Day and he told me that we were playing by the “Japanese rules” this year. This means that the women buy all the MEN in their lives chocolate. Uh-huh. We’ll see about that…

Last week we didn’t get to everything because we had so many leftovers from the tacos and we ended up going out one night. So this week is a lot of repeats from last week.

Pizza! and Salad

Pasta with Red Lentils and Ginger – from Vegetarian Planet – we have a huge jar of red lentils in the pantry

Enchiladas and Salad – new recipe coming soon!

Green Chile Cheese Tamales – from the freezer, it’s the last of them – boo. Guess it’s time to make more…

Maybe a soup in the pressure cooker with some of the dried beans loafing around in the pantry. Probably from Lorna Sass’s cookbook, Great Vegetarian Cooking under Pressure.

What are you cooking this week?

For more great ideas, be sure to go over to Gluten Free Goodness later in the week to see what everyone else has posted. Or check out OrgJunkie (not necessarily GF or Veg).

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